“Peace Be Unto You” in Arabic.
It continues to amuse me that it sounds almost exactly like “Shalom Aleichem” which means the same thing in Hebrew. And I suspect I’m going to be hearing a good bit of both starting next week when I’m in the Holy Land for 10 days.
I’ve never been there.
To say that these are interesting times is obviously understated, but for me it’s incredible! The Israeli Prime Minister meets with the President today (Wednesday 2/15).
The latest accounts are that this meeting will be more social and probably less foreign policy-driven. Though, I can’t imagine they won’t have at least some cursory dialog about relations with Palestine, settlements, and the possibility of a two-state solution.
I have my biases on these issues, to be sure. And our trip leader recommended some books to read in advance of the trip, but I’ve chosen not to. I don’t want to fuel my biases any further either way before the trip. I want to go in as cold as possible and just experience it as it comes.
You know what I’m most interested to see?
The little things.
- How far across is the Sea of Galilee?
- How high is the Mount of Olives?
- How big is Gethsemane?
- How far did Jesus carry his cross? How high is that hill?
- What does the light look like at sunrise in Jerusalem?
- How do people feel and approach their world day to day?
I can’t wait to feel the Spirit there.
I’m perfectly giddy about it!
So, we’ve been discouraged from taking laptops, but I’ll have my iPad and phone. WiFi is available all over the place, so I’m hoping the connectivity is good enough to let me do regular Blog and Facebook posts.
I’d really like to keep a running online commentary of the trip to share with you, including pictures. But, I won’t really know how this will go until we’re on the ground over there.
Watch this blog space and the church’s Facebook page. I’ll do the best I can to keep you in our loop. I’m so excited to share this with you as we go!
I’ll even try to go live on Facebook if it will work.
Meanwhile, back at the ranch…
I’ll miss Sunday, February 26, but I’m sure it’s not going to break your heart. Tex is coming back to preach! Love him!
Lent begins with Ash Wednesday, March 1, while I’m gone.
Keep an eye on the church’s Facebook and your email for regular Lenten devotionals, musings, etc. I’m planning to share a variety of things over the season as we journey together to Jerusalem in the liturgical season approaching Holy Week.
Of course, the timing of this trip only magnifies my own spiritual journey and I’m going to share as much as possible with you. Maybe it will magnify yours too!
I can’t wait!
Grace and peace be with you,